Chapter Six - Proclamations.3Mature

          Walking through the disorganized chaos of the camp, Jon made his way towards the southern quarter, where myriads of shops and camp followers came to make their buck or fuck off of men-at-arms. 

          Eventually he came to Ironworks, a district solely intended for the invaluable smithies of the Rhygarean host. His head rang to the tumult of hammers and anvils, the bellows filled the air with heat and soot. Despite the head-pounding cacophony of the metal workers, this was perhaps Jon's favorite place in the entire encampment. The forge, the only part of war that is creation. 

          He visited his armorer, Sam. Well, technically Sam wasn't his armorer, but they have developed a relationship over the past decade or so. Sam Razor-edge Jon liked to call him, and with ample reason. The blades this man produced could split a strand of hair down the middle. 

          "Back so soon?" Sam chided. He was a bulk of a man, well over six feet tall with shoulders that could knock down a brick wall. Usually, the relentless years of hammering would lead a blacksmith to have one arm much larger than the other. This was not the case with Sam. His arms and legs were of a selfsame thickness and would have made the trunks of most trees jealous.

          All over his limbs and chest were burns and scars. "Kisses from the forge," Sam liked to call them. A tuft of white hair barely clung to the outskirts of his head, and his eyes were a keen blue. Clad in naught but a leather vest and cotton shorts, he looked much like an overgrown man in children's clothing. Jon hid his smile. 

          "You know perfectly well why I'm here," Jon said and Sam nodded. Rummaging through a haphazard pile of plate and weaponry, the armorer dragged out an eight-foot long ashen spear tipped with a leafed blade another two feet long. He also produced a great oaken shield with concentric iron rings from rim to center. Emblazoned on it was the golden dragon of the Infantry. 

          Jon inspected both spear and shield afore he was satisfied. "Beautiful. They're both simply beautiful." He took a mock jab at the air testing the balance of his weapon. Perfect, as always. "You never cease to amaze me, Razor," Jon offered a purse of coins. Sam accepted and did not count its contents.

          Jon left Ironworks with upholstered confidence. I will puncture jerkin and chainmail like a hot-knife through butter. He grinned. But not yet. There was still work to be done. 

The End

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